Nature versus nurture: it’s still an unanswered question. And that mystery applies to all things appearance.
Faces have always captured my attention. I am fascinated by the variety of features and expressions they contain.
A Couple of Kittens…
I first was obsessed with my mother’s set of three cat figurines. There was one “mother cat” and her two smaller white kittens. I was especially preoccupied with the kittens.
And here, perhaps, is where I encountered one of my first harmful disordered ideas about image. I viewed one kitten as cuter, a/k/a, “better” than the other. Why? It was because this kitten- let’s call her “Sally”- appeared to have a sweeter, more pleasing, “good kitty” facial expression. The other kitten, however, had more of a “Sophia- Loren- exotic- eyeliner-drawn- face” situation going on.
And, somehow, to me, that kitten face – let’s call her “Sophia”- symbolized more mischief and displeasing, “bad kitty” behaviors than that of innocent-and-cute-looking Sally.
Indeed, in this kitten context, my toddler self was already learning inaccurate appearance associations all on my own.
But soon, other influences contributed to my preferences. Adults also instructed me about which emotions, often depicted in the human face, were acceptable – and which were not.
An Image Utensil?